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Norwegian research

One of the Eldis RSS newsfeeds on major development issues

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Vulnerability to climate change and adaptation strategies of local communities in Malawi: experiences of women fish-processing groups in the Lake Chilwa Basin

03 Jan 2017 11:11:51 GMT

In recent years, research on climate change and human security has received much attention among policy makers and academia alike. Communities in the Global South that rely on an intact resource base and struggle with poverty, existing inequalities and historical injustices will especially be affected by predicted changes in temperature and precipitation.

The objective of this article is to better understand under what conditions local communities can adapt to anticipated impacts of climate change. The empirical part of the paper answers the question as to what extent local women engaged in fish processing in the Chilwa Basin in Malawi have experienced climate change and how they are affected by it.
The article assesses an adaptation project designed to make those women more resilient to a warmer and more variable climate. The research results show that marketing and improving fish processing as strategies to adapt to climate change have their limitations. The study concludes that livelihood diversification can be a more effective strategy for Malawian women to adapt to a more variable and unpredictable climate rather than exclusively relying on a resource base that is threatened by climate change.

Impact of a peer-counseling intervention on breastfeeding practices in different socioeconomic strata: results from the equity analysis of the PROMISE-EBF trial in Uganda

23 Dec 2016 12:15:37 GMT

Background: Undernutrition is highly prevalent among infants in Uganda. Optimal infant feeding practices may improve nutritional status, health, and survival among children.

Objective:  Our  study  evaluates  the  socioeconomic  distribution  of  exclusive  breastfeeding  (EBF)  and  growth outcomes among infants included in a trial, which promoted EBF by peer counselors in Uganda.

Design:   Twenty-four  clusters   comprising   one   to   two   communities   in   Uganda  were   randomized   into intervention  and  control  arms,  including  765  mother-infant  pairs.  Intervention  clusters  received  the  promotion  of  EBF  by  peer  counselors  in addition to standard care. Breastfeeding and growth outcomes were compared according to wealth quintiles and  intervention/control  arms.  Socioeconomic  inequality  in  breastfeeding  and  growth  outcomes  were measured  using  the  concentration  index  12  and  24  weeks  postpartum.  We  used  the  decomposition  of  the concentration index to identify factors contributing to growth inequality at 24 weeks.

Results:  EBF  was  significantly  concentrated  among  the  poorest  in  the  intervention  group  at  24  weeks postpartum, concentration index - 0.060. The control group showed a concentration of breastfeeding among the richest part of the population, although not statistically significant. Stunting, wasting, and underweight were  similarly  significantly  concentrated  among  the  poorest  in  the  intervention  group  and  the  total population at 24 weeks, but showing non-significant concentrations for the control group.

Conclusion:  This  study  shows  that  EBF  can  be  successfully  promoted  among  the  poor.  In  addition, socioeconomic inequality in growth outcomes starts early in infancy, but the breastfeeding intervention was not strong enough to counteract this influence.

Combining long-lasting insecticidal nets and indoor residual spraying for malaria prevention in Ethiopia: study protocol for a cluster randomized controlled trial

23 Dec 2016 12:01:22 GMT

Background: Long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLINs) and indoor residual spraying (IRS) are the main malaria prevention interventions in Ethiopia. There is conflicting evidence that the combined application of both interventions is better than either LLINs or IRS used alone. This trial aims to investigate whether the combination of LLINs (PermaNet 2.0, Vestergaard Frandsen, Lausanne, Switzerland) with IRS using propoxur will enhance the protective benefits and cost-effectiveness of the interventions against malaria and its effect on mosquito behavior, as compared to each intervention alone.

Methods/Design: This 2 x 2 factorial cluster randomized controlled trial is being carried out in the Adami Tullu district in south-central Ethiopia for about 116 weeks from September 2014 to December 2016. The trial is based on four arms: LLINs + IRS, LLINs alone, IRS alone and control. Villages (or clusters) will be the unit of randomization. The sample size includes 44 clusters per arm, with each cluster comprised of approximately 35 households (about 175 people). Prior to intervention, all households in the LLINs + IRS and LLINs alone arms will be provided with LLINs free of charge. Households in the LLINs+IRS and IRS alone arms will be sprayed with carbamate propoxur once a year just before the main malaria transmission season throughout th e investigation. The primary outcome of this trial will be a malaria incidence based on the results of the rapid diagnostic tests in patients with a fever or history of fever attending health posts by passive case detection. C ommunity-based surveys will be conducted each year to assess anemia among children 5-59 months old. In addition, community-b ased malaria prevalence surveys will be conducted each year on a representative sample of households during the main transmission season. The cost-effectiveness of the interventions and entomological studies will be simultaneously conducted. Analysis will be based on an intention-to-treat principle.

Discussion: This trial aims to provide evidence on the combined use of LLINs and IRS for malaria prevention by answering the following research questions: Can the co mbined use of LLINs and IRS significantly reduce the incidence of malaria compared with the use of either LLINs or IRS alone? And is the reduced incidence justifiable compared to the added costs? Will the combined use of LLINs and IRS reduce vector density, infection, longevity and the entomological inoculation rate? These data are crucial in order to maximize the impact of vector control interventions on the morbidity and mortality of malaria

Listening to women and girls diplaced to urban Afghanistan

20 Dec 2016 03:55:49 GMT

Growing numbers of internally displaced people (IDPs) live  in  informal  settlements  in  major  Afghan  urban  centres. Compared with other Afghans they are more likely to be non-literate, to have lower rates of school enrolment, to live in larger households (but with lower household  incomes),  to  be  unemployed  and  to  be  highly food insecure.

There is insufficient understanding of and response to the needs of youth, and particularly vulnerable females, displaced to urban areas.  This report presents findings of research in three informal settlements in Jalalabad, Kabul and Kandahar which was commissioned by the Norwegian  Refugee  Council  and  researched  by  The  Liaison  Office  (TLO),  an  Afghan  non-governmental  organisation.

The   study   confirmed   earlier   findings   about   the impacts  for  IDPs  of  living  in  poor  urban  settlements,  characterised by inadequate and crowded accommodation,   insufficient   water   and   sanitation facilities,  extreme  food  insecurity  and  inability  to  get education or employment.

The  findings  of  the  research  break  new  ground, confounding   the   common   assumption   that   urban   women and girls should be more able – in a supposedly more secure and progressive urban environment with a  concentration  of  service  providers  –  to  access  services and employment and social opportunities than prior to their displacement.

This   research   found   the   opposite,   showing   that  displacement    places    women    and    children    at    disproportionate  risk,  living  with  fewer  freedoms  and  opportunities  than  those  they  enjoyed  in  their  natal  villages  or  when  living  in  Pakistan  or  Iran.  Evidence  gathered shows that displaced females face significant enhanced    gendered    constraints    to    accessing    education,   health   and   employment   opportunities.   They  have  lost  freedoms,  social  capital  and  networks  they  may  have  previously  enjoyed.  The  controlling  tendencies of their male kin, and their propensity to violence, are enhanced by their own desperation.

Energy: the missing link in globalization

19 Dec 2016 03:02:24 GMT

Energy resources are transported long distances and create powerful interlinkages between countries. Energy thus contributes to the globalization of the world, but has received little attention in the globalization literature. This article hypothesizes that energy globalization is growing and accelerating. The hypothesis is tested by developing an index to measure changes in the extent of energy globalization during the 20-year period from 1992 to 2011. The following sub-indicators are included in the index: number of energy trade relationships, average distance of energy trade relationships, and energy dependency of the countries in the world. The development of the index encounters a number of conceptual and methodological challenges related to globalization, which, it turns out, have not been addressed properly in the broader literature. Clarification of these issues can help improve the analysis of globalization.

Turkey in the geopolitics of natural gas

19 Dec 2016 02:51:47 GMT

This paper outlines the role of Turkey as an increasingly more important natural gas consuming country while at the same time strategically located as a transit country between major consuming areas in the EU and suppliers in the Middle East, Central Asia and Russia. Turkey’s ability to import additional volumes of gas to meet the growing demand as well as to renew the contracts after their expiration in the 2020s is fraught with daily send out capacity constraints of the BOTAŞ system entry points and legal limitations in its Natural Gas Market Law. The long-term contracts with all its current pipeline gas suppliers - Russia, Azerbaijan and Iran - expire in the 2020s. Contract renewals could be beneficial for all parties, but price uncertainty and concerns with the ongoing Turkish market liberalization, new gas suppliers, LNG and political developments make the import picture more open. As a transit country Turkey may transport additional volumes of natural gas from Iran and other Middle East countries (especially Iraq), from the next wave of production in Azerbaijan, or from new gas production in the Eastern Mediterranean (Israel/Cyprus) to Europe in the TANAP pipeline operational from 2018. Commercial and financial, infrastructural, and political situations and relations constrain this potential. A realization of TurkStream might increase dependence on Russian gas but also minimize risks of interruptions in gas flows through Ukraine. The largest potential for an increased role for Turkey as an east-west transit country is when the entire domestic market continues to grow, and legal and infrastructural constraints resolved.

Lebanon poised at the brink

19 Dec 2016 02:37:13 GMT

Gravely affected by the Syrian crisis, Lebanon has remained relatively stable against all odds – despite the influx of some 1.5 million Syrian refugees and an internal political crisis involving supporters of oppos- ing Syrian factions. Lebanon’s resilience can be explained by the high opportunity cost of state breakdown for domestic, regional and interna- tional political actors. Moreover, international economic assistance, d iaspora remittances and informal networks established by refugees help to prevent outr ight economic breakdown. However, stability re- mains extremely precarious. P rimary tipping points include (1) an IS strategy to spread the conflict to Lebanon , with consequent disintegra- tion of the army along sectarian lines, (2) democratic decline and peo- p le ’ s dissatisfaction, (3) Hizbullah’s domestic ambitions and Israeli fears over the group’s growing military powers and (4) the potential that frustration between refugees and host communities may erupt into recurrent violence. The slow economic and sanita ry decline in the country (5), however, is considered the biggest challenge.

Emissions trading and climate diplomacy between Europe and China

19 Dec 2016 02:26:01 GMT

Over the past decade, the EU has been following a “policy of unconditional  engagement”  vis-à-vis  the  People’s  Republic  of China, pursuing its promotion of effective multilateralism. In the field of climate change, China has been an increasingly important member of the UNFCCC process and a key target of European engagement policies. Regardless of geographical distance, which restricts European ability to influence, Europe has employed a variety of instruments in its foreign environmental policy. Yet how do Chinese decision-makers perceive these efforts?

The  Paris  COP21  Summit  has  been  hailed  as  a  major  breakthrough by Europeans and Chinese alike. Drawing on two sets of interviews carried out in Beijing in 2012 and 2016 this brief looks at the dynamics of climate policy adoption in China. Emissions trading serves as a case study for domestic politics: the seven pilot systems were also result of a turf battle between the National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Finance. The EU and Norway could plug into domestic policy making by providing large-scale capacity building. So, could this be a success story for climate policy promotion?

Food price differences across Indian states: patterns and determinants

19 Dec 2016 02:13:56 GMT

The paper examines food price differences across Indian states during 2004-2014 using food consumer prices from household surveys and wholesale/retail prices for selected goods. At the individual product level there are large price differences across states, with prices doubling or trebling across India for a typical case, but with considerable variation across products. Price dispersion is much lower for food on average; measured at this level price dispersion between Indian states is considerably lower than between countries within the same income range, and Indian states are slightly more integrated than countries in Western Europe. At the product level, the most important determinants of price differences across states are limited access to supply from other states, and the extent of own production in the state. Richer states have higher consumer prices, but this income-price link is weaker for wholesale prices. Food price dispersion within India has decreased during the period studied. For policy, the results suggest that India should eliminate obstacles to inter-state trade in order to promote food security and the real income of its citizens. The magnitude and importance of price level differences also suggest that better price level data should be provided in the future, to facilitate further study of India’s regional development.

Waste Management Outlook for Mountain Regions - Sources and Solutions | GRID-Arendal - Publications

16 Dec 2016 06:32:59 GMT

Mountains play an essential role in supplying water, energy, food and other services to millions of people living in the mountains and downstream. Ensuring the continued supply of these services has never been more important. However, many mountain regions are experiencing a growing solid waste problem, from ever-expanding urban sprawls and cities, increasing consumption patterns, existing and past mining operations, tourism activities and practises of illegal dumping. Steepness, remoteness, prevailing socio-economic conditions, and vulnerability to natural hazards, makes waste management in mountains more challenging than in lowland areas. Gravity and river flow can also enlarge the footprint of mountain waste to a thousand kilometres or more downstream - and even right into the ocean.

 The take-home message is that the inadequate treatment or disposal of waste in mountains not only creates risks for ecosystems and human health in mountain regions, but also for downstream areas. It is truly an issue of global concern. The good news is that there are many options available to prevent and manage waste in mountain environments, in ways that protect mountain ecosystems and people, and prevent problems from migrating downstream.

This report highlights both the challenges and the solutions for sound waste management in mountain regions. It has been produced by UNEP, GRID-Arendal and the International Solid Waste Management Association.

Freedom, empowerment and opportunities: action plan for women's rights and gender equality in foreign and development policy 2016-2020

16 Dec 2016 06:16:54 GMT

The fundamental aim of Norway’s gender equality efforts is to increase the opportunities available to women and girls, promote their right to self-determination, and further their empowerment. This is crucial if girls, boys, women and men are to have equal rights and equal opportunities. Norway will help to ensure that women gain a stronger position in the family, in the community and in the international arena. Boys and men can be agents of change for gender equality, and will also benefit from gender equality. Our work on women’s rights is based on international human rights obligations, in particular the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women.

This Action Plan focuses on five thematic priority areas. These have been chosen because they are recognised as crucial for improving the situation of women, and because they are relevant for both foreign and development policy. These are also areas where Norway has particular strengths and can make a difference. The Action Plan brings together and builds on the measures set out in chapter 7 of the white paper on gender equality (Meld. St. 7, 2015-2016 – in Norwegian only), the white papers Education for Development (Meld. St. 25, 2013-2014), Opportunities for All: Human Rights in Norway’s Foreign Policy and Development Cooperation (Meld. St. 10, 2014-2015) and Working together: Private sector development in Norwegian development cooperation (Meld. St. 35, 2014-2015). It also reaffirms the long-standing commitment to promoting gender equality in Norwegian foreign policy.

National action plan. Women, peace and security 2015-2018

16 Dec 2016 06:05:22 GMT

The adoption of UN Security Council resolution 1325 in 2000 was a groundbreaking event. The resolution recognised the disproportionate impact of conflict on women, the need to protect women from violence during conflicts, and the vital importance of women’s participation and the protection of women’s rights for international peace and security. Since 2000, the Security Council has adopted a further six resolutions on women, peace and security. Resolutions adopted by the Security Council are binding on all UN members.The Security Council resolutions on women, peace and security are intended to bridge the gap between theory and practice in this field. The present Action Plan is a tool to help Norway contribute to these efforts. The resolutions establish norms and make recommendations on how to integrate a gender perspective into peace and security efforts. The starting point is that ensuring women’s participation and taking the experience of women into account are of crucial importance in preventing and dealing with conflict, in providing effective protection for women, and for establishing peace processes that result in sustainable peace. The resolutions point to the need to incorporate a gender perspective into international operations, so that the security needs of both men and women are taken into account. They also recognise that humanitarian efforts must address the needs of both women and men in conflict situations. Four of the resolutions deal with sexual violence and recommend ways of preventing and combating such violence. This is the Norwegian authorities’ third national plan on women, peace and security, and represents an important step forward in Norway’s efforts to implement the Security Council resolutions.Norway will continue to contribute to international efforts to achieve sustainable peace on the basis of human rights, the rule of law and democracy. Peace means far more than the absence of war. Norway’s efforts must be designed to meet women’s security and humanitarian needs and uphold women’s rights. The Government’s global health and education efforts, which are targeted particularly at women and girls, tie in with these overall aims. Our goal is to ensure that more children and young people affected by crisis and conflict receive a good-quality education. We will also seek to ensure that education is given higher priority in humanitarian aid work. There is systematic discrimination against women in many countries and in many areas of activity. Armed conflict can exacerbate the situation because women are forced to flee their homes, and also because parties to conflict may deliberately attack or abuse women. The lawlessness that accompanies conflicts can make women vulnerable, for example to sexual violence.It is of crucial importance to improve women’s security and increase their freedom of action and influence. The participation of women is important in itself: everyone has the right to take part in decision-making processes that affect their own future. Men need to be encouraged to become partners in efforts to change the situation. The aim is for women and men to be involved in decision-making processes as equal partners. This will help to ensure that the security needs of the whole population are met, and will strengthen the legitimacy of decisions. Ensuring that such processes are inclusive is also a way of preventing conflict. It is not possible to achieve sustainable peace if half the population is excluded from peace processes and decisions. At the same time, the security institutions themselves must be changed. It is essential to incorporate a gender perspective into all peace and security work, which means that the impact on both women and men must be evaluated during each pha[...]

Displaced women and homelessness

30 Nov 2016 06:40:43 GMT

This report identifies conflicts as a cause of homelessness. Displaced persons, by definition, have to abandon their homes. Many of them have been forced to leave because of targeted discrimination.

NRC´s research shows that this is compounded by the repressive social norms women experience from their communities and families. Those who face discrimination because of their ethnicity, place of origin and gender, are more likely to become homeless and, oncehomeless, are exposed to more serious protection risks.

Women refugees in Lebanon and the consequences of limited legal status on their housing, land and property rights

30 Nov 2016 06:22:21 GMT

Understanding the situation for women refugees in particular, including the protection risks they face, is essential in order to develop and provide appropriate interventions taking their perspective and specific challenges into account.

The aim of this report is to highlight some of the consequences of limited legal status, with a specific focus on the coping mechanisms of refugees to try to maintain their housing each month and what impact such, often negative, coping mechanisms have on women in particular.

International law and sea-level rise: forced migration and human rights

30 Nov 2016 05:39:16 GMT

This report provides a general overview of the international law issues relating to sea-level rise, (forced) migration and human rights. The first part provides a brief accounting of 'What We Know and What We Can Expect', discussing sea-level rise and its impacts, and then, in turn, their relationship and interaction with the criteria of statehood, human rights and mobility. The second part features 'tools' with the potential to address the mobility and human rights implications associated with sea-level rise and its impacts. Part two initially explores interventions that would enable affected persons to remain in situ, before embarking on an examination of extant 'tools' pertinent to internal and cross-border movements, respectively. The final part presents the way forward, drawing out key areas and principles of international law with the capacity to lend clarity and content to States' obligations to address the challenges presented by sea-level rise.

The Nagoya Protocol on access to genetic resources and benefit sharing: User-country measures and implementation in India

30 Nov 2016 05:22:23 GMT

User-measure requirements are the cornerstone of the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization developed under the Convention on Biological Diversity. These have come about as the result of hard, persistent pressure from developing countries on developed countries to take co-responsibility in making the access and benefit sharing regime functional. The degree of national implementation of the user measure requirements will thus be an important indicator of the success of the Nagoya Protocol. This report reviews these requirements and the situations as regards national implementation so far. It reviews the  status and options for India in its implementation and notes some future challenges.

Climate change policy inventory and analysis for Tanzania

30 Nov 2016 04:51:33 GMT

This report is an output of the Global Framework for Climate Services Adaptation Programme in Africa. The goal of the report is to: 1) assess the extent to which climate change concerns have been integrated or mainstreamed into national policy documents in mainland Tanzania, 2) to consider the role of climate services in achieving national sectorial policy goals, and 3) identify entry points for the further development of climate services within the current policy frameworks. Fifteen key policy documents relevant to economic development, climate change and environment, agriculture and food security, disaster management and risk reduction, and health planning were analysed. Three major findings emerged from this analysis. First, while climate change is addressed in a number of the policy documents, the concept of climate services was not. Second, policy documents across all sectors identified improved early warning systems as a specific objective. This represents a common entry point for development and delivery of climate services, as well as an opportunity to increase cross-sectorial adaptation coordination and planning. Third, the analysis highlighted that efforts to manage short- and long-term climate risks are not well integrated under current policies and legislation in Tanzania. Additionally, we found that the National Environmental Policy and National Environmental Management Act are the primary policy documents that oversee climate change-related issues. It will be important to link the development and delivery of climate services with the established institutional structures for climate change adaptation under these current policies and legislation, to avoid creating isolated or duplicative institutional arrangements. Based on these findings, several recommendations are made that can inform climate services development and delivery in Tanzania.

Estimating mobilized private climate finance for developing countries. A Norwegian pilot study

30 Nov 2016 04:42:05 GMT

The point of departure for this study is the available data in Norway on climate finance for developing countries. The bottleneck in tracking mobilized private climate finance is availability and quality of data. The main challenge is that Norwegian public institutions sourcing public support for climate finance have not yet implemented sufficient systems for measurement, reporting and verification of mobilized private climate finance. In addition, climate finance tracking is constrained by methodological difficulties and lacking international standard definitions and methods. Despite these limitations, we have estimated that Norwegian public climate finance support to developing countries via bilateral and multi-bilateral support amounted to 1,019 MUSD in 2014, split into bilateral flows at 578 MUSD and multi-bilateral flows at 441 MUSD. The main public institutions sourcing this money, ranked according to the size of their money flows, are: Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) - embassies, Norad, MFA, KLD, and Norfund. We examined public support for projects summing up to 692 MUSD, which we could link to an estimated 202 MUSD of mobilized private co-finance. Based on our analysis, Norfund is the primary institution that has mobilized private climate finance. These climate finance flows are likely to be low estimates. In addition, Norway provided another 123 MUSD as climate-related core support to multilateral organizations. Although a number of uncertainties are attached to the data, they cover the largest flows and most available project data. One learning from this process is not to aim for a “perfect” standardized and complete tracking system, but for an international tracking standard that is simple and transparent, and with built-in flexibility to handle different contexts in terms of actors and sources at international and national levels.

Green bonds and environmental integrity: insight from CICERO second opinions

30 Nov 2016 04:29:53 GMT

This policy note shares insights from CICERO's experience in producing over 60 second opinions. Insights on the environmental integrity of green bonds include: 1) Management that is aligned for climate risk can give greater confidence in a green bond, 2) Internal dialogue with environmental experts can benefit from issuing a green bond and obtaining a second opinion, and 3) Best practice is emerging for certain project types. Issuers are more often incorporating life cycle analysis to understand the full environmental impact of the projects they finance, e.g. in renewable energy projects, as well as of their corporate activities including supply chains and subcontractors. Sustainable buildings are more likely to include an energy efficiency target in addition to building certifications. Multilateral development banks and municipalities are more likely to include adaptation components in their green bonds. In some cases, environmental experts are gaining veto power in the project selection process. Regular reporting on green bond projects is becoming the norm, with increasing interest in working towards impact reporting.

Business as UNusual: the implications of fossil divestment and green bonds for financial flows, economic growth and energy market

30 Nov 2016 04:16:09 GMT

Green bonds and fossil divestment has emerged as a bottom-up approach to climate action within the business community. Recent pledges by large banks and institutional investors have reached levels that have the potential to contribute markedly to a low carbon transition. This paper traces the impact of green finance in a multiregional global general equilibrium model with non-fossil and non-coal segments of financial flows in addition to the usual unconstrained market for funding. Our high green finance scenario reflects a reasonable upscaling of current level of pledges towards 2030. The study shows that green finance shifts the investments towards industries generating more value added and increasing GDP, future savings and investments. The green finance leads to a lower return on investments and a transfer of income from investors to wage income. Russia and China see the largest cost increase in coal investments due to constraints on finance for fossil industries. The green finance reduces coal consumption by 2.5 per cent below BAU in 2030 and raises the share of non-fossil electricity from 42 to 46 per cent at the global level. Over the whole period towards 2030, the green finance avoids global CO2 emissions corresponding to the total emissions of European Union and Japan in a recent year.

Seizing the momentum: displacement on the global climate change agenda

28 Nov 2016 10:18:50 GMT

With global temperatures breaking new records and an average of at least 21.5 million people already being displaced each year by the impact and threat of climate-related hazards, it is time to ratchet up efforts to mitigate, adapt to and prepare for ever greater displacement risk.

This briefing paper summarises where the issues of displacement, migration and planned relocation stand in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) agreements, decisions and discourse, and highlights opportunities and challenges inherent in turning knowledge and commitments into concrete action for people already displaced and those at greatest risk of becoming so.

The rise of environmental crime: a growing threat to natural resources, peace, development and security

25 Nov 2016 04:31:21 GMT

The environment provides the very foundation of sustainable development, our health, food security and our economies. Ecosystems provide clean water supply, clean air and secure food and ultimately both physical and mental wellbeing. Natural resources also provide livelihoods, jobs and revenues to governments that can be used for education, health care, development and sustainable business models. The role of the environment is recognized across the internationally agreed seventeen sustainable development goals adopted in 2015.

The slaughter of elephants and rhinos has raised awareness of the illegal trade in wildlife. We are facing mass extinctions and countries are losing iconic wildlife species. However, the scope and spectrum of this illegal trade has widened. Criminals now include in their trafficking portfolios waste, chemicals, ozone depleting substances, illegally caught seafood, timber and other forest products, as well as conflict minerals, including gold and diamonds.

The growth rate of these crimes is astonishing. The report that follows reveals for the first time that this new area of criminality has diversified and skyrocketed to become the world’s fourth largest crime sector in a few decades, growing at 2–3 times the pace of the global economy. INTERPOL and UNEP now estimate that natural resources worth as much as USD 91 billion to USD 258 billion annually are being stolen by criminals, depriving countries of future revenues and development opportunities.

Environmental crime has impacts beyond those posed by regular criminality. It increases the fragility of an already brittle planet. The resulting vast losses to our planet rob future generations of wealth, health and wellbeing on an unprecedented scale. They also compromise our ability to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

An additional by-product of environmental crime is that it undermines peace. It is not surprising that the UN Security Council has recognized the serious threat to security posed by environmental crime, with UN reports pointing to armed groups and potentially even terrorists sustained through the spoils of this rising criminal industry.

However, an enhanced law enforcement response can help address this worrying trend. There are significant examples worldwide of cross-sectoral efforts working to crack down on environmental crime and successfully restore wildlife, forests and ecosystems. Such collaboration, sharing and joining of efforts within and across borders, whether formal or informal, is our strongest weapon in fighting environmental crime.

But to meet the scale of this threat, a broad-ranging, targeted effort must be put forward so that peace and sustainable development can prevail.

Blue Carbon

25 Nov 2016 04:07:39 GMT

If the world is to decisively deal with climate change, every source of emissions and every option for reducing these should be scientifically evaluated and brought to the international community’s attention. Oceans and ocean ecosystems play a critical role in maintaining our climate and in assisting policy makers to mainstream an oceans agenda into national and international climate change initiatives.

Blue Carbon is carbon captured by the world’s oceans, representing more than 55% of the green carbon (captured by plants). The carbon captured by living organisms in oceans is stored in the form of sediments from mangroves, salt marshes and seagrasses. It does not remain stored for decades or centuries (like for example rainforests), but rather for millennia.

Vegetated coastal habitats – mangrove forests, salt-marshes and seagrass meadows – have much in common with rain forests: they are hot spots for biodiversity, they provide important and valuable ecosystem functions, including a large carbon sink capacity, and they are experiencing a steep global decline.

However, whereas society is well informed of the benefits and threats associated with rainforests, there is a comparative lack of awareness on the status and benefits of vegetated coastal habitats. This is perhaps because of a “charisma” gap, where these often submerged, out of sight coastal habitats, are not as appealing to the public as their terrestrial counterparts. Yet, because of their similar functions and threats, coastal habitats can be considered as blue carbon sinks.

United Nations World Ocean Assessment

25 Nov 2016 03:52:37 GMT

The first World Ocean Assessment (WOA) is a report on the state of the planet’s oceans. It is the product of the first cycle of the Regular Process for global reporting and assessment of the state of the marine environment, including socio-economic aspects, which was established after the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development.

Marine ecosystem services and the Sustainable Development Goals

25 Nov 2016 03:44:26 GMT

How do marine ecosystem services support the Sustainable Development Goals?
Marine and coastal ecosystems are vital to life on Earth. These ecosystems provide many “services” to people including food, coastal protection, carbon sequestration, biodiversity, recreation, but also inspiration for art and science, cultural identity and a spiritual home.

Endangered reefs, threatened people

24 Nov 2016 03:28:15 GMT

In a recent study, a group of scientists mapped human dependence on coral reefs and future threats to them. The findings are worrying – many places where people depend on coral reefs are the same places that are mostly likely to suffer damage from climate change and ocean acidification. 
Large numbers of people living in coastal areas of Southeast Asia are at greatest risk from both future bleaching and ocean acidification, while many other regions where people depend on coral reefs face high risk from at least one of these threats.

Forest governance in Latin America: strategies for implementing REDD

24 Nov 2016 02:43:29 GMT

Global interest in and attention to forests have grown as concerns about global warming and climate change have taken a heightened position in international policy debates. Forests have been repositioned in international arenas as repositories of global value for their contribution to carbon sequestration and climate mitigation. In this context, Latin American forests are seen as globally important in fighting climate change.

Changing elites, institutions and environmental governance

24 Nov 2016 02:15:13 GMT

The topic of elites has always been controversial in Latin American social sciences. Elites have been studied indirectly as landowners, capitalists, business-leaders or politicians, and have also been approached directly using concepts and theory from elite studies. Although there is a significant amount of literature on the role of elites in democratic transformations, elites have often been considered to be an obstacle to the formation of more democratic, prosperous and egalitarian societies. This is also the case in the literature on environmental governance, in which elite groups are often considered to be an obstacle to sustainable development and an obstacle to establishing more equitable influence over the use and benefits of natural resources. Therefore, although an elitist conservation movement has long existed in Latin America, struggles to protect the environment from overexploitation and contamination have commonly been related to struggles against local, national and transnational elites by subaltern groups.

Enabling more inclusive and efficient food and agricultural systems in Africa: FAO session at the IFAMA World Forum 18 June 2014, Cape Town, South Africa

23 Nov 2016 04:48:56 GMT

FAO organized a workshop during the International Food and Agribusiness Management Association's World Forum 2014, focusing on themes covered by Strategic Objective 4 that place greater emphasis on supporting national policies that enhance inclusiveness and promote efficiencies along agri-food value chains. The event brought together students, academics, government officials, private sector representatives and development practitioners to discuss innovative approaches to promote inclusive and efficient agricultural and food systems in Africa.

Chapter 3. Integrating small-scale dairy farmers into school milk programmes in the United Republic of Tanzania / by Helene Lie, Department of International Environment and Development Studies, Norwegian University of Life Science, Aas, Norway.

The resource bites back: entry-points for addressing corruption in wildlife crime

23 Nov 2016 04:35:27 GMT

Corruption has recently risen up the global wildlife conservation agenda with a series of international agreements highlighting the role of corruption in facilitating wildlife crime. Though there are notable exceptions, there is still a weak treatment in the literature of the problems of, and solutions to, wildlife crime from an anti-corruption perspective. Identifying and promoting effective interventions that get to the heart of the corruption problems associated with wildlife crime is a shared responsibility across the wildlife conservation, anti-corruption, anti-illicit trade, and anti-organized crime communities.

As well as reviewing existing empirical literature to explore the types and characteristics of corruption associated with wildlife crime, this U4 Issue identifies entry-points for addressing corruption in wildlife crime based on recent anti-corruption effectiveness literature.

Building credible corruption risk assessment and corruption risk management procedures is important for improving wildlife conservation programming. This will enable generation of detailed analyses of corruption risk factors at programmatic level, the recording of baseline data on corruption prevalence, and the production of detailed plans on how best to mitigate and manage identified corruption risks.

Deciding over nature: corruption and environmental impact assessments

22 Nov 2016 02:43:46 GMT

Environmental impact assessments (EIAs) are a core aspect of environmental decision-making in most countries. Despite massive potential for public harms resulting from corrupt decision-making linked to EIAs, research on this topic is still very limited. We consider the main generic corruption risks in carrying out EIAs and provide suggestions for what public agencies, including development aid donors, might do to mitigate them.

Our analysis provides a systematic literature review of the topic, supplemented by fieldwork-based case analysis of the EIA process in Albania. We find that a range of poor practice currently afflicts Albania?s EIA system and that the present accountability and monitoring framework for EIAs does little to mitigate various corruption risks.

Lack of consultation. Stakeholders’ perspectives on local content requirements in the petroleum sector in Tanzania

22 Nov 2016 02:13:55 GMT

Tanzania has recently discovered huge offshore natural gas fields. This has led the Government to develop Local Content Policies (LCPs) to increase local job and business opportunities. This brief presents the main findings from a study of the stakeholders’ assessment of the LCPs the Tanzanian Government has developed. While there is widespread support to LCPs, the government is criticized by stakeholders for not conducting a transparent and inclusive consultative process which may weaken the implementation of the LCPs. This study follows the process from the first draft of the LCP, published in May 2014 by the Ministry of Energy and Mineral, to the Petroleum Act, passed by Parliament in July 2015 and assented to by the Tanzanian President in December 2015.

Green: at what price?

21 Nov 2016 12:56:38 GMT

Reforestation, environmental development, growth in the developing world: when does a green economy come at too high a price?

The Ugandan Government wants to encourage development and boost it’s forest reserves. They’ve leased over 8000 hectares of land to Norwegian based company, Green Resources, Africa’s largest forestation company. This sounds like a good news story in Africa, except that Bukaleba Forest Reserve, on the shores of Lake Victoria, has been home to thousands of rural people for decades.

These villagers are indicative of 90 % of rural Africans who have no land title. This film explores one simple truth: land acquisitions for growth and development can compromise the livelihoods of some of the world’s most vulnerable people.

We hear from the villagers, the Land Ministry, the company at the core. ‘Green: at what price?’ not only highlights the plight of Ugandan villagers, but reveals a vital scenario playing out across Africa and around the globe.

Panama Papers and the looting of Africa

21 Nov 2016 04:44:07 GMT

On the 3rd of April 2016 the German Newspaper Sud Deutsche Zeitung in collaboration with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) made an unprecedented release of documents from a database of the Panama based offshor e law firm Mossack Fonseca which is the world’s fourth largest offshore services law firm. The release captured global attention and would turn out to be the largest data leak in history. It exposed the offshore secrecy structures of wealthy businessmen, politicians, suspected drug lords and arms dealers use to hide their wealth.

The extent and magnitude to which the African continent is exposed to the shadowy world of offshore dealings is illustrated through the Panama Papers which found that implicated companies were operating in 44 out 54 African countries. A recent study by the United Nations committee on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) showed that commodity dependent countries are losing up to 67% of their export earnings worth billions of dollars due to trade misinvoicing. While it remains to be seen how much the Panama papers will lead to a rethink of the international financial system the leak has significantl y contributed to exposing its fault lines. The prevailing discourse on illicit financial flows (IFFs) and the global financial transpar ency has until now focused on the demand side elements originating primarily from poorly governed developing countries. In contrast, the revelations in the Panama Papers suggest a systemic failure in the global financial architecture and illustrate the depth of advanced accounting, finance, and legal systems providing the supply-side infrastructure for IFFs to offshore territories and high secrecy jurisdictions.

Association between malaria and malnutrition among children aged under-five years in Adami Tulu District, south-central Ethiopia: a case-control study

21 Nov 2016 04:21:00 GMT

Background: Malaria and malnutrition are the major causes of morbidity and mortality in under-five children in developing countries such as Ethiopia. Malnutrition is the associated cause for about half of the deaths that occur among under-five children in developing countries. However, the relationship between malnutrition and malaria is controversial still, and it has also not been well documented in Ethiopia. The aim of this study was to assess whether malnutrition is associated with malaria among under-five children.

Methods: A case–control study was conducted in Adami Tulu District of East Shewa Zone in Oromia Regional State, Ethiopia. Cases were all under-five children who are diagnosed with malaria at health posts and health centres. The diagnosis was made using either rapid diagnostic tests or microscopy. Controls were apparently healthy under-five children recruited from the community where cases resided. The selection of the controls was based on World Health Organization (WHO) cluster sampling method. A total of 428 children were included. Mothers/caretakers of under-five children were interviewed using pre-tested structured questionnaire prepared for this purpose. The nutritional status of the children was assessed using an anthropometric method and analyzed using WHO Anthro software. A multivariate logistic analysis model was used to determine predictors of malaria.

Results: Four hundred twenty eight under-five children comprising 107 cases and 321 controls were included in this study. Prevalence of wasting was higher among cases (17.8 %) than the controls (9.3 %). Similarly, the prevalence of stunting was 50.5 % and 45.2 % among cases and controls, respectively. Severe wasting [Adjusted Odds Ratio (AOR) =2.9, 95 % CI (1.14, 7.61)] and caretakers who had no education [AOR = 3, 95 % CI (1.27, 7.10)] were independently associated with malarial attack among under-five children.

Conclusion: Children who were severely wasted and had uneducated caretakers had higher odds of malarial attack. Therefore, special attention should be given for severely wasted children in the prevention and control of malaria.

Self-reported acute pesticide intoxications in Ethiopia

21 Nov 2016 03:57:51 GMT

Background. Pesticide exposure is an important public health concern in Ethiopia, but there is limited information on pesticide intoxications. Residents may have an increased risk of pesticide exposure through proximity of their homes to farms using pesticides. Also the pesticide exposure might be related to employment at these farms. This study investigated the prevalence of acute pesticide intoxications (API) by residence proximity to a nearby flower farm and assessed if intoxications were related to working in these farms or not.

Methods. A cross-sectional survey involving 516 persons was conducted. Participants were grouped according to their residence proximity from a large flower farm; living within 5 kilometers and 5–12 kilometers away, respectively. In a structured interview, participants were asked if they had health symptoms within 48 h of pesticide exposure in the past year. Those who had experienced this, and reported two or more typical pesticide intoxication symptoms, were considered as having had API. Chi-square and independent t-tests were used to compare categorical and continuous variables, respectively. Confounding variables were adjusted by using binomial regression model.

Results. The prevalence of API in the past year among the residents in the study area was 26 %, and it was higher in the population living close to the flower farm (42 %) compared to those living far away (11 %), prevalence ratio (PR) = 3.2, 95 % CI: 2.2-4.8, adjusted for age, gender & education. A subgroup living close to the farm & working there had significantly more API (56 %) than those living close & didn’t work there (16 %), adjusted PR = 3.0, 95 % CI: 1.8-4.9. Flower farm workers reported more API (56 %) than those not working in the flower farm (13 %,), adjusted PR = 4.0, 95 % CI: 2.9-5.6.

Conclusion. Our study indicates a 26 % prevalence of self-reported symptoms attributable to API. The residents living closer than 5 kilometers to the flower farm reported significantly higher prevalence of self-reported API than those living 5–12 kilometers away. This increased risk of API was associated with work at the flower farm.

Spatial variations in child undernutrition in Ethiopia: Implications for intervention strategies (PhD theses)

21 Nov 2016 03:37:10 GMT

Background: Ethiopia is one of the countries with the highest burden of undernutrition, with rates of stunting and underweight as high as 40% and 25%, respectively. National efforts are underway for an accelerated reduction of undernutrition by the year 2030. However, for this to occur, understanding the spatial variations in the distribution of undernutrition on a varying geographic scale, and its determinants will contribute a quite a bit to enhance planning and implementing nutrition intervention programmes.Objectives: The aim of this thesis was to evaluate the large- and small-scale spatial variations in the distribution of undernutrition indicators, the underlying processes and the factors responsible for the observed spatial variations.Methods: We used nationally available climate and undernutrition data to evaluate the macro-scale spatial pattern of undernutrition and its determinants. We applied a panel study design, and evaluated the effect of growing seasonal rainfall and temperature variability on the macro-scale spatial variations (Paper I). We conducted a repeated cross- sectional survey to assess the performance of the Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS) developed internationally to measure household food insecurity. The results from this validation work were used to modify the HFIAS items for subsequent papers (Papers III and IV). We conducted a census on six randomly selected kebeles to evaluate the spatial patterns of undernutrition on a smaller scale (Paper III). For Paper IV, we conducted a cross-sectional survey on a representative sample, and employed a Bayesian geo-statistical model to help identify the risk factors for stunting, thereby accounting for the spatial structure (spatial dependency) of the data.Results: In Paper I, we demonstrated spatial variations in the distribution of stunting across administrative zones in the country, which could be explained in part by rainfall. However, the models poorly explained the variation in stunting within an administrative zone during the study period. We indicated that a single model for all agro-ecologic zones may not be appropriate. In Paper II, we showed that the internal consistency of the HFIAS' tools, as measured by Cronbach's alpha, was adequate. We observed a lack of reproducibility in HFIAS score among rural households. Therefore, we modified the HFAIS tool, and used it for subsequent surveys in this thesis (Papers III and IV). In Paper III, spatial clustering on a smaller scale (within a kebele) was found for wasting and severe wasting. Spatial clustering on a higher scale (inter-kebele) was found for stunting and severe stunting. Children found within the identified cluster were 1.5 times more at risk of stunting, and nearly five times more at risk of wasting, than children residing outside this cluster. In Paper IV, we found a significant spatial heterogeneity in the distribution of stunting in the district. Using both the local Anselin Moran's I (LISA) and the scan statistics, we identified statistically significant clusters of high value (hotspots) and a most likel[...]

Mozambique: evaluation portrait

18 Nov 2016 04:54:47 GMT

"Evaluation Portraits" give short summaries of documents used as background for NORAD's series of "Country Evaluation Briefs" (CEB). Each CEB is accompanied with an Evaluation Portrait which may later be updated with new links to relevant evaluations.


18 Nov 2016 04:50:14 GMT

This brief on Mozambique is part of a report series from the Evaluation Department – "Country Evaluation Briefs" (CEB) – collecting and summarising existing evaluation findings from selected Norwegian focus countries. The purpose is to make relevant, systematically collected and collated knowledge about these countries easily accessible for people that work with these countries and other interested readers.

In the reference list there are direct links to the underlying evaluation reports and other relevant documents. In the additional document, "Evaluation Portraits", there are also short summaries of the documents. This compilation may later be updated with new evaluations.

This brief is part of the first round (the pilot phase) focusing on South Sudan, Afghanistan and Mozambique. These were presented at a seminar in Norad on Wednesday, 16 November 2016.

The CEBs were written by the Chr. Michelsen Institute upon a commission by the Evaluation Department.

South Sudan: evaluation portrait

18 Nov 2016 04:44:32 GMT

"Evaluation Portraits" give short summaries of documents used as background for NORAD's series of "Country Evaluation Briefs" (CEB). Each CEB is accompanied with an Evaluation Portrait which may later be updated with new links to relevant evaluations.

South Sudan

18 Nov 2016 04:38:57 GMT

This brief on South Sudan is part of a report series from the Evaluation Department – "Country Evaluation Briefs" (CEB) – collecting and summarising existing evaluation findings from selected Norwegian focus countries. The purpose is to make relevant, systematically collected and collated knowledge about these countries easily accessible for people that work with these countries and other interested readers.

In the reference list there are direct links to the underlying evaluation reports and other relevant documents. In the additional document, "Evaluation Portraits", there are also short summaries of the documents. This compilation may later be updated with new evaluations.

This brief is part of the first round (the pilot phase) focusing on South Sudan, Afghanistan and Mozambique. These were presented at a seminar in Norad on Wednesday, 16 November 2016.

The CEBs were written by the Chr. Michelsen Institute upon a commission by the Evaluation Department.

Afghanistan: evaluation portrait

18 Nov 2016 04:32:32 GMT

"Evaluation Portraits" give short summaries of documents used as background for NORAD's series of "Country Evaluation Briefs" (CEB). Each CEB is accompanied with an Evaluation Portrait which may later be updated with new links to relevant evaluations.


18 Nov 2016 04:20:47 GMT

This brief on Afghanistan is part of a report series from the Evaluation Department – "Country Evaluation Briefs" (CEB) – collecting and summarising existing evaluation findings from selected Norwegian focus countries. The purpose is to make relevant, systematically collected and collated knowledge about these countries easily accessible for people that work with these countries and other interested readers.

In the reference list there are direct links to the underlying evaluation reports and other relevant documents. In the additional document, "Evaluation Portraits", there are also short summaries of the documents. This compilation may later be updated with new evaluations.

This brief is part of the first round (the pilot phase) focusing on South Sudan, Afghanistan and Mozambique. These were presented at a seminar in Norad on Wednesday, 16 November 2016.

The CEBs were written by the Chr. Michelsen Institute upon a commission by the Evaluation Department.

Mid term review of the INP Agreement Moz-0032 Moz-14/00001. Strengthening of the oil and gas sector in Mozambique

15 Nov 2016 03:39:18 GMT

The INP Agreement MOZ-0032 MOZ-14/0000 (May 1st, 2014 to April 30th, 2018) is an institutional cooperation agreement between the Instituto Nacional de Petróleo (INP) in Mozambique and the Ministry of Petroleum in Norway implemented through the Norwegian National Petroleum Directorate (NPD).     Designed with a budget of NOK 50,460,000, its aim is to contribute to the “economically, environmentally and socially responsible management of petroleum resources in Mozambique”.
This report summarizes the findings from the Mid-Term Review (MTR) carried out by Community Wisdom Partners (CWP) in mid 2016, based on a review of relevant documentation and over 40 in-depth interviews.  The aim of the MTR was to verify the degree of progress made in planned activities, to assess results achieved to date, and to recommend any changes or measures to maximize opportunities for the second half of the programme.

The MTR revealed positive results.  The INP Agreement was designed to meet the most pressing needs of Mozambique ́s petroleum sector regulatory environment.  It has successfully responded and adapted to current and emerging sector needs. The largest single deviance from plans has been the justified decision to dedicate more time and funds to legal advisory services than initially anticipated, at the expense of other areas.
There is no doubting the impact of the project in terms of building INP capacity.  The development of the INP as regulator and gatekeeper of legislation around petroleum in Mozambique has increased greatly since the start of the INP Agreement, an achievement which is in large part attributable to Norway ́s support.  The country’s great success in O&G over the last five years has been in making itself an attractive investment destination for O&G industry majors with the capital resources and technical skills to lead projects through to production in a socially and environmentally responsible way.
By the end of 2015, the programme had disbursed 56% of core programme funds; and current funding is expected to be exhausted by the end of 2016, with additional funds required for the programme to achieve its goals by the end of the established period.
It is recommended that minor programmatic adjustments be made in the final two years of operations.  It is also clear that support will be needed beyond 2018 to address the underlying imbalances in experience, capacity and money – and thus power - between INP and major O&G companies, and build a robust regulatory system and institutions in line with a fast developing oil sector.  These are essential pillars for Mozambique to work towards economically, environmentally and socially responsible management of petroleum resources.

How pro-poor are land rental markets in Ethiopia?

15 Nov 2016 03:21:16 GMT

Land rental markets can potentially improve the access to land for land-poor households that possess complementary resources that can enable them to utilize land efficiently. Land rental markets can also enable landowners who are poor in non-land resources to rent out their land such that their land is utilized more efficiently and they themselves can get a better income and improved welfare from their land resource. This report assesses the land rental market that is dominated by a reverse tenancy system with relatively poorer landlords and less poor tenants. This market has largely developed informally in Ethiopia but has also been shaped by the changing land policies. We assess how pro-poor it is and whether interventions potentially can make it even more pro-poor and welfare enhancing or whether a “hands off” policy is preferable. If we can detect a significant market failure, there is room for intervention. However, there are also a number of current interventions in the market. We assess whether these achieve the intended outcomes or rather should be lifted or modified.

Population growth, economic growth, and structural transformation in agriculture may change the role of land from being the most important safety net and livelihood opportunity to become an important resource for agricultural transformation and development. The non-farm sector in Ethiopia has grown rapidly in recent years and provides new employment opportunities and this reduces the pressure on land as the only and main source of livelihood.

Our study of land rental markets in Ethiopia covers communities in Tigray, Oromia and SNNP regions focuses particularly on the period 2006 to 2012, but draws on data and research that goes back to 1998 in Tigray and utilizes information from landlords and tenants and other rural households with male and female representatives, local Land Administrative Committee (LAC) members and local conflict mediators with long experience in handling local land disputes.

In this report, we review the relevant literature and fill important gaps in this literature. These gaps include a) the stated reasons of landlords and tenants for partner choice and contract choice in the land rental market and their attitudes and preferences regarding regulation and formalization of land rental contracts; b) we investigate land access of youth in the land rental market; c) we assesses how joint certification of husbands and wives has affected participation in the land rental market; and d) how increasing population pressure and land scarcity affects land access and the land rental market over time.

Street based self-employment: a poverty trap or a stepping stone for migrant youth in Africa?

15 Nov 2016 02:57:16 GMT

A significant percentage of youth in urban Africa is employed in the informal sector. The informal sector is more accessible than the formal sector for people with low human andfinancial capital, such as youth migrants from rural areas. But the sector is also generally considered to provide a subsistence livelihood. This study examines whether street based selfemployment in Africa offer a stepping stone towards a better livelihood or an urban poverty trap for youth migrants. The analysis is based on data from a survey of 445 street vendors in two urban areas in Ethiopia. We found that street based self-employment is indeed dominated by migrant youth; 96% of those engaged in the street based self-employment are youth and 98% are migrants from rural areas or smaller towns. Our analysis suggests that street based selfemployment can offer a viable transitional employment for migrant youth. We found that the average monthly earning of these self-employed youth is better than the minimum wage in the public sector and much higher than the official poverty line. We found that most of the youth consider this as a transitional employment and accumulate skill and capital with a view to establishing their own enterprise or accessing skilled employment. Young women are less likely than young men to seek exit out of street based self-employment but education increases their aspiration. Youth with better-off parents back home and those with larger network in their new residence are more likely to change their current occupation. The main risk for the livelihood of youth in this type of employment is lack of legal recognition to their activities and work place, which manifest itself in the form of arbitrary eviction and displacement from their work place.

Youth as environmental custodians: a potential tragedy or a sustainable business and livelihood model?

15 Nov 2016 02:42:05 GMT

Youth unemployment and migration is a growing challenge that needs more political attention in many countries in the world, particularly countries with rapid population growth and economic transformation. Proactively mobilizing the youth as a resource in the creation of sustainable livelihoods can potentially be a win-win-win solution that Ethiopia is currently attempting with its new youth employment strategy and high ambitions to transform the country’s economy into a Green Economy. If it succeeds, it can set an example for other countries in the world to follow. This paper gives and overview of the youth program and the basic ideas and challenges.

Investments in sustainable development: a comparative study on how the Nordic development finance institutions work with development impact in context of the Sustainable Development Goals

09 Nov 2016 12:25:36 GMT

The four Nordic donor countries : Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark, all have a long history in the international landscape of development cooperation. In their official development aid (ODA), all four countries have an implemented focus on investing in business- and private sector development and therefore allocate funds to support market development, sustainable business, employment opportunities, financial systems and increasing the tax base in developing countries.The allocated funds are managed and invested by the individual countries'€™ Development Finance Institutions (DFIs ): Finnfund in Finland, Norfund in Norway, Swedfund in Sweden and IFU in Denmark. The DFIs play a decisive role by providing high risk loans, equity and guarantees to private sector investments in developing countries and emerging markets.In recent years, and most notably by the 2015 adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on financing for development, the convergence between human rights, labour standards and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) has been recognised by the international community, thus setting forth a global reliance on the private sector to contribute to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda. A particular focus has been put on establishing the private sector as a active partner in eradicating extreme poverty by placing emphasis on private sector investments in supporting and creating inclusive growth and sustainable development. In the light of these international developments, the role of DFIs has been considered to be particularly important by governments to bridge traditional development aid with private investments in developing countries.The DFIs overall objective to contribute to sustainable development, place them as an important vehicle for change. Their significant responsibility towards implementing solid policies, procedures and monitoring systems in their investments are identified as key in supporting sustainable development in the countries in which they engage. It is therefore important to continuously measure and monitor the actual long term development impact and short term effect of their investments in order to establish transparency on results. Consequently, the need for DFIs to document the actual development impacts of their investments has been further solidified. On this backdrop and with considerations given to the general level of increased engagement by Nordic DFIs ten Nordic NGOs have commissioned this study. The study will look into the role of Nordic DFIs in development cooperation, highlight trends and developments through comparison of similarities and differences in practices and propose recommendations on how to improve their work with and reporting on development impact in the li[...]

Whose waters? Large-scale agricultural development and water grabbing in the Wami-Ruvu River Basin, Tanzania

08 Nov 2016 07:41:18 GMT

In Tanzania like in other parts of the global South, in the name of 'development' and 'poverty eradication' vast tracts of land have been earmarked by the government to be developed by investors for different commercial agricultural projects, giving rise to the contested land grab phenomenon. In parallel, Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM ) has been promoted in the country and globally as the governance framework that seeks to manage water resources in an efficient, equitable and sustainable manner. This article asks how IWRM manages the competing interests as well as the diverse priorities of both large and small water users in the midst of foreign direct investment. By focusing on two commercial sugar companies operating in the Wami-Ruvu River Basin in Tanzania and their impacts on the water and land rights of the surrounding villages, the article asks whether institutional and capacity weaknesses around IWRM implementation can be exploited by powerful actors that seek to meet their own interests, thus allowing water grabbing to take place. The paper thus highlights the power, interests and alliances of the various actors involved in the governance of water resources. By drawing on recent conceptual insights from the water grabbing literature, the empirical findings suggest that the IWRM framework indirectly and directly facilitates the phenomenon of water grabbing to take place in the Wami-Ruvu River Basin in Tanzania.

Links between tenure security and food security in poor agrarian economies: causal linkages and policy implications

08 Nov 2016 04:49:26 GMT

Population growth leads to growing land scarcity and landlessness in poor agrarian economies. Many of these also face severe climate risks that may increase in the future. Tenure security is important for food security in such countries and at the same time threatened by social instability that further accelerate rural-urban and international migration. Provision of secure property rights with low-cost methods that create investment incentives can lead to land use intensification and improved food security. Pro-active policies that engage youth in establishment of sustainable livelihoods hold promise. Social and political stability are essential for tenure security and food security.